Graphic Logo for ISIS the Irish Sentencing and Information services depicting scales and text
  1. Supreme Court

The Supreme Court is established under Article 34.4 of the Constitution as the court of final appeal in all civil and constitutional matters. Its role in criminal matters is more limited because of the existence of the Court of Criminal Appeal.


There are eight Supreme Court judges, including the Chief Justice who presides over the Court. The Supreme Court may sit in divisions of three, five or seven judges and one or more division of the Court may sit at the same time.


Appeals can be taken to the Supreme Court from the sentencing decisions of the Court of Criminal Appeal to the Supreme Court. Such appeals to the Supreme Court are subject to a leave requirement imposed by statute in section 29 of the Courts of Justice Act, 1924, as substituted by section 22 of the Criminal Justice Act, 2006.


Under this statutory provision, appeals from the Court of Criminal Appeal may be taken only in cases involving "a point of law of exceptional public importance", where it is "desirable in the public interest" for the appeal to be taken to by the Supreme Court. 


The links below will take you to summaries of some of the judgments of the Supreme Court on appeals taken under s. 29 of the Courts of Justice Act, 1924.